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Looking back, Lorraine says some of the choices she made in her life helped put her in the state of mind that led to her depression. "Sometimes we take choices maybe for ... lessons we have to learn or lessons that are going to be taught whether we want them or not."

Although some of her choices led to stressful events, Lorraine points out that smaller things can also trigger depression. "You don't necessarily have to have a custody battle and a foreclosure and a child sick," she says. "Depression is very insidious and sneaks up on you. There are simple things in people's lives that can bring you down."

Eventually, Lorraine sought professional help. "When I finally made that step into the psychiatrist's office and he said to me, 'Well, Lorraine, you're clinically depressed,' and I said, 'Okay, I know what's going on. I am going to fight like hell to figure out my life,'" she says.

Lorraine credits antidepressants with pulling her out of her fog. "I was very against any kind of medication because I felt, 'Oh, my God, I'm an actress. I need my emotions. And if I take an antidepressant, I'll never feel again and I'm going to be hooked on them forever," she says. "I was very, very, very wrong about the whole medication thing. And I think that's very important. I feel that it's really what saved me."

She says she also spent time learning about herself and deciding what kind of person she wanted to be. "I lived at Barnes & Noble at the self-help department and I sat there for a long time," she says. "And I went through books, and even the kids who worked there said, 'Miss Bracco, would you like a chair?'"
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FROM: Stars Pull Back the Veil on Depression
Published on January 01, 2006

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